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Chase confirms Presidential Plus credit card benefits not changing

by on Sun June 10, 2012 • 42 Comments

The Chase Continental Airlines Presidential Plus credit card is no longer offered to new applicants now that United and Continental have merged. They launched the new United Mileage Plus Club Card that fills the lounge access credit card hole. But a lot of current Presidential Plus credit card holders are wondering what will happen to their existing credit cards with the new United.

Good news. Chase has confirmed the benefits won’t change, and you can keep a Presidential Plus credit card with the new United. They’ll just send you a card that says United Presidential Plus on it later this year. You can see a list of benefits at this link for existing card holders.

Here’s the verbatim of the letter they sent to card holders…note it doesn’t mention the Avis President’s Club and Hyatt Platinum benefits, but rest assured those benefits are reiterated on Chase’s website under the new United name.


Dear Cardholder,

United and Continental have successfully completed their merger, and now offer you the new, world-class loyalty program – United MileagePlus. Chase and United are proud to continue to provide you with unique ways to earn award mile and enjoy exclusive Cardmember benefits. All you need to do is use your Credit Card from Chase to continue earning award miles. Rest assured your miles will be credited to your MileagePlus account. As a reminder, your MileagePlus account number is your former OnePass number.

In keeping with United’s evolving brand, your Credit Card from Chase is getting a new name along with an updated design. Your Continental Airlines Presidential Plus Card will now be referred to as the United MileagePlus Presidential Plus Card on your statements and other Cardmember communications. As long as you continue to meet our credit criteria, you will receive a MileagePlus Predidential Plus Card for you and any authorized users on your account by the end of 2012. This replacementCard will have the same account number, pricing, annual fee and benefits.

In the meantime, keep using your current Card for all your purchases while enjoying the following benefits:

  • Full membership to the United Club
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Premier Access travel services
  • Free first and second checked bags
  • 2 miles per $1 spent on tickets purchased from United, as well as qualifying hotel stays and car rentals
  • 1 mile per $1 spent on tickets purchaed from United, as well as qualifying hotel stays and car rentals
  • 1 mile per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • 1,000 Flexible Premier qualifying miles (Flex PQMs) for every $5,000 you spend with the Card
  • Award seat upgrades for Premier members
  • Book any seat, any time, using miles – no restrictions. If seats are available for sale, they can be redemed at the Standard Award level
  • Book award seats close to your departure date without a fee
  • Miles don’t expire
  • Inside Access from Chase
  • Guest privileges from the Luxury Hotel & Resort Collection

For complete details on all your Cardmember benefits, visit today, or call the number on the back of your Card.


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42 thoughts on Chase confirms Presidential Plus credit card benefits not changing

  1. Susan Wright

    I am the primary cardholder of the United Presidential Plus card and my husband
    is the secondary cardholder. He both used to have our separate United Club cards
    but he did not receive one the last time mine was updated. Is this a change in
    your policy?


      @Susan – Secondary cardholders didn’t receive separate Club membership cards to our knowledge. There was as spouse club membership program where a spouse could buy membership for a discounted rate of $250 a year, but that program ended and spouses need to pay full price now.

  2. Jack

    Hi- is it possible to convert my Presidential Plus MasterCard to a Visa? If it is possible can I retain the same # and history?

  3. linda

    Hi….. We booked a marvelous trip with our friends to Europe. They may have to cancel or delay due to surgery that has not healed correctly. I have a Presidential Plus card, and am a Platinum mileageplus card member. Does the trip cancelation from my card cover any part of the prepaid hotels or change fees on the airline ticket?

    thank you!


      @linda – Sorry to hear about that. Unfortunately it only covers your immediate family members, not issues that arise with friends.

  4. Helen Ostrowski

    I see that I have double miles on ‘eligible car rentals and hotel stays’. I did not receive information with my new card (received today), at it replaces one that was hacked this weekend. Who/what are the rental agencies and hotel properties?


      @Helen – Any hotel night you purchase directly from the hotel (not via Prieline, Expedia, or other intermediaries) counts for double miles. And any normal car rental applies, again as long as it’s reserved and paid for directly with the car rental company.

  5. julie g

    I booked a flight with my award miles then cancelled the flight within 2 hours of booking. I wanted to use a voucher that was going to expire. I kept waiting for my miles to refunded to me. I called after a month and they said just because you cancel your flight, they don’t automatically refund your miles. I had to go to cancelled flights which is hidden in the website under my flight activity, then have to hit the “more options” button. Then you can redeposit my miles.
    I have flown with continental for years elite status, I have never had this problem. Now they want me to pay $125 to redeposit my miles. I feel like they are being deceptive about getting miles back. It never alerts you to do this when I cancelled my flight.

    1. MileCards

      @julie g Hate to say it but keep trying different agents – the airline is so big now you tend to get different interpretations each time. Make sure you call the Mileage Plus line (not regular reservations or refunds) and have your confirmation number ready.

      Be explicit in making them see the reservation was cancelled within 24 hours of booking and qualifies for the fee exemption.

  6. Javier

    We have United Presidential Plus and wanted to know if United Milage Plus is the same ($395)
    when my wife bought a ticket the boarding pass did not print elite access or group 3, instead she was in group 7. Seems like benefits are only for the primary card holder, a major change for us. The secondary card holder – my wife – has no or a few benefits – not worth spending that much money

    1. MileCards

      @Javier – For both of those cards the secondary card holder does not get boarding / baggage privileges. The only way that happens is if you the primary cardholder are traveling with her. The upshot is, they don’t charge for the secondary cardholder. A cheaper way to get her baggage and priority boarding is to get her a United Explorer (no fee first year, $95 after).

  7. J P Hellmers

    what is the fee to include my spouse (and co-card holder) included as spouse for the united club?

    1. MileCards

      @JP – It’s generally about $250. You can call the number on the back of your United Club card to ask for the discounted rate for Presidential Plus card spouses.

  8. REFUSED Premier Access

    July 22, 2012: Was just refused the early access to the plane in Newark even though I purchased the United flight on my Chase Presidential Plus Card–the Boarding Pass said “Group 7” when Presidential Plus should always be “Group 3” (after the First Class, etc.). Called CHASE Customer Service and they are notifying United–I saw other passengers with the same issue today. WTF are we paying $500/year for????

    1. REFUSED Premier Access

      Thank you MileCards,
      Both CHASE and UNITED blamed each other, but they did offer me some small compensation. I really like the benefits of the Presidential Plus Card and United Club Elite Access, so my main concern is whether this “failure” will recur…Hopefully, Chase and United will figure out what went wrong with their computer systems and assure cardholders that it won’t happen again. Stay tuned…..

  9. Chris

    When it says book award seats Close to departure date without a fee, what is the time frame. Ie 1 week, 1 month

  10. Matt

    I called the card help line, and was told that the Presidential Plus card no longer offers the Business 2 for 1 on international flights. This is a change. The original Continental Presidential Plus card allowed for Business 2 for 1 on domestic flights, then when United merged they changed it to Business 2 for 1 on international flights. Now I am being told that they also did away with that!?!? If I had known, I would have gone with the British Airways Visa card. They are giving away 100,000 miles for opening a card with them. $395 a year, and we are cutting out all the reasons I could justify holding this card. What gives? And I like how that was kept off this site as well. Even though it is still being advertised here…

    1. MileCards

      @Matt- Sounds like their agents are confused as well.

      The 2 for 1 benefit is for international flights with a BusinessFirst cabin that has the big seats. That basically means those for long overseas flights. Shorter international like US- Mexico or Caribbean don’t have BusinessFirst and don’t qualify.

    2. MileCards

      @ Matt – If it’s a flight with “BusinessFirst” class – which is primarily long overseas flights – the benefit is still around.

  11. Steven Wolf

    Last year I used my flexible elite miles to get to the 1K level. Now the computer and 1K customer service won’t let me!

    I have 79000 elite miles (Platinum) and 27000 flexible elites! I want to use 21000 to get to the 1K for 2013….how can I do it?
    I was told no changes to the presidential plus benefits but it appears that there is at least one!



  12. Jocelyn Ellis

    I am excited to be a new “bearer” of the Continental Presidential Plus card. I was looking forward to spending my 8-hour layover at Heathrow in one of your clubs, but it appears now that you have no club at Heathrow? Please confirm.

    (I arrive from the US on a Continental flight, but C/U does not serve Bilbao, so I am having to fly out with a different carrier. Does this matter?)

    Also, I had expected to take my 15-year-old son in with me (who is traveling with me), but the stories I am reading indicate this may not be possible. Again, please confirm.

    Fourth and final question: Will I be denied access if I have a card bearing the Continental name? Must I get a United card before I go (assuming there are any benefits to be had at Heathrow)?

    1. MileCards

      @Jocelyn – First thing is – make sure you have the separate “United Club” membership card that should have been sent under separate cover. If not – request it – that, not your credit card is what the lounges need to let you in.

      As for Heathrow unfortunately the lounges there require you to have a *departing* flight on a Star Alliance carrier. Arriving on United isn’t much help in your case.

      But on your way back you and your son will have no problem stopping by the Star Alliance lounge if you’re leaving T1 or T3 or the SkyTeam lounge if leaving T4.

  13. Sarah Phelps

    I travelled home from Munich to Newark yesterday and did not get an upgrade even though business first had 30 empty seats! I have silver Premier status and the Presidential pPus card. I was in economy plus and ti was quite comfortable but I don’t understand the lack of upgrade. Is it not available to and from Europe?

    1. MileCards

      @Sarah – Unfortunately upgrades aren’t free on long haul international flights for anyone — even United’s top level frequent flyers. You have to use miles + cash (usually $550 + 20000 miles) or an upgrade instrument to be eligible. These seats usually sell for $2,000 – $5,000 roundtrip so it’s not feasible to offer free upgrades like they do on domestic flights.

  14. David

    I had a similar problem at Heathrow. I was flying to Newark (legacy Continental) which is at a different terminal than the legacy United flights. I am not sure, but It seems that Emirates has taken over the old Continental/Star Alliance lounge space and that new United has made an arrangement to allow allow business and first class passengers have access to the Delta/SkyTeam lounge. WhenI showed them my seperate Lounge membership card I got as part of my Presidential Plus card membership, I was denied access as I was flying economy with Silver/Premier status. They did not care that it showed I have lounge access with Continental (not United). As I guess I was nice in how I asked her to double check, she did let me in while she checked. She said I should not be allowed in, but made a one-time exception.

    Pure speculation, but I guess new United gave up the lounge as they are planning on moving the gates for the legacy Continental flights to another terminal at Heathrow that already has a lounge for other United and S* flights. Emirates is expanding like wildfire, and I guess they just outbid them for the space. Too bad you have to connect in Dubai for everything and their reward program is pathetic. as otherwise a nice airline.

    I called MilesPlus to try to explain, but the rep I spoke with, while someone sympathetic, was not in a position to help or even passalong my concern.

  15. Fabiano Lopes

    This is a lie!!! We lost the 25% bonus miles when traveling on Continental!!! United is making American Airlines look really good! They just missed the opportunity to distinguish themselves and ended up creating a card without real benefits!

    1. MileCards

      @Fabiano – Yes – a few months ago they changed this (along with no more discounts on premium wines in the club) though the concerns we were trying to address are regarding what was left after those earlier changes.

  16. Matt

    With the Continental card, we were allowed two free checked bags for each traveller booked with the cardholder. It now appears only the primary cardholder gets the two free checked bags. Is this correct?

    1. MileCards

      @Matt – Matt, as long as the second traveler is in the same reservation as the primary cardholder you can both get the two free checked bags.

        1. MileCards

          @Matt – Unfortunately that feature changed a few months ago, and it’s just for you and one other person.

  17. Kathleen Marshall

    I tried to get into the lounge at the heathrow airport. I have the continental presidential plus card. They let my daughter in law have excess a few weeks before when she showed them her card but not me. They act like they have never seen one of those cards. Please explain. Where is a listing of lounges? I t is all very confusing to everyone. I am regretting paying almost $400 to have this card. I had to pay for bags one time when my tickets ended up being United. They said the card did not work with them. Since then I have used it on other Untied and they honored it. I called customer service and they said they would credit the charges but that never happened.

    1. MileCards

      @Kathleen – You should have received a separate United Club / Presidents Club card that’s not a credit card. That’s the card to use for access to lounges; if you don’t have it, call up Chase, and they’ll connect you to United to send a replacement. If you happen to be at a United owned lounge and forget your card, you can tell them your frequent flyer number and they can look you up. But if it’s a partner lounge owned by United, then you need to have that separate card at hand. The listing of lounges you can access is here — you have access to the lounges with blue circles in the listing

      As for your bag fee…would recommend calling Chase again to get that charge reversed.


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